Constructing History: Structures and Silhouettes

Constructing History: Structures and Silhouettes

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Period dress and reproduction, focusing on the major changes between 1890 and 1930, are the subjects of “Constructing History: Structures and Silhouettes,” an exhibition at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Robert Hillestad Textile Gallery that runs through June 28, 2013.

Molly J. McPherson curates this exhibition in partial fulfillment of her thesis work in the Department of Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design. Donations from Leota Cahall, of Wilber, Nebraska are the driving element in this exhibition.  The curator, working with Professor Barbara Trout, identified additional garments from the Historic Costume Collection donated by Katie Best, Meg Lauerman, and the former Teachers College of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

The exhibition also features extant garment reproductions from the period. Curator Molly McPherson constructed these garments to facilitate the study of structure and dressmaking techniques prominent at the time. Major fashion changes between 1890 and 1930, and how they relate to clothing choices made by individuals in the Midwest are highlighted in the exhibition. Wedding apparel, athletic wear, and undergarments help illustrate these changes.

A public reception will take place on Friday, May 24, 2013, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m., with a gallery talk by Molly McPherson at 7:00 p.m. Additional programming includes a public lecture and reception on Sunday, June 9 following the Friends of the Robert Hillestad Textiles Gallery Annual Meeting.  A brief business meeting for the Friends will take place at 2:00-2:30 p.m. in Room 31, lower level of the Home Economics Building followed by a presentation by Janice Stauffer and Dr. Barbara Trout titled "Dressing for I Do, I Do", in Room 11, also on the lower level. The Friends will host a 20th Birthday Reception on behalf of the Gallery from 3:15-4:00 p.m. on the second floor.

The Hillestad Gallery is part of the Department of Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design in the UNL College of Education and Human Sciences. The gallery is on the second floor of the Home Economics Building on East Campus, on 35th Street north of East Campus Loop (map at Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday-Friday and by appointment. Admission is free. Guest parking is available near the building and metered stalls are located in the Nebraska East Union lot. For more information, call (402) 472-2911 or visit